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Keystone Confrontation With White House Looms After Senate Passage

A veto showdown moved closer on Thursday after the Senate passed legislation to approve the Keystone XL pipeline and yank the decision out of President Barack Obama’s hands, Roll Call reports.  

The bill (S 1) passed 62-36. The Senate spent nearly three weeks debating Keystone, made a priority by Senate Republicans after they took control of the chamber.  

The legislation still has more stops in its journey to Obama’s desk. Since the Senate approved a handful of amendments to the measure, the House will either have to take up that chamber’s version and pass it or move to go to conference. Lawmakers would have to move quickly for a conference to be assembled prior to a Feb. 16 recess week.  

Senate Republicans have indicated they expect a conference, though they say no decisions have been made.

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